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Statistics of the Catholic Church in Korea 2017

 

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Korea (President: Most Rev. Hyginus Kim Hee-joong) published Statistics of the Catholic Church in Korea 2017 on April 11, 2018.

 

On the basis of the compiled data collected from 15 dioceses and the Military Ordinariate in Korea, 7 Catholic universities, and 167 men and women religious institutes in Korea, the Statistics of the Catholic Church in Korea 2017 shows the annual statistics of the Catholic Church in Korea as of December 31, 2017. These statistics will be helpful to better understand the present situation of the Catholic Church in Korea and also be a useful point of reference for pastoral ministries.

 

The following is a summary of the meaningful statistical results:

 

According to the Statistics, as of December 31, 2017, the number of Catholics in Korea was 5,813,770, an increase of 1.3% (71,821) over the previous year. It amounted to 11.0% of the total population of Korea, 52,950,306 (51,778,544 residents based on the resident registration; 1,171,762 foreigners). The total number of Catholics in Korea has slightly and consistently increased since 2005. Especially since 2009, the rate of Catholics in Korea has kept going over the 10% mark towards 11%.

 

By gender, the number of the male faithful was 2,469,148 and that of the female faithful was 3,334,622, respectively 42.5% and 57.5% of all Catholics in Korea. The ratio of the male faithful was slightly higher than that of the female faithful until 0-29 years of age, but the percentage of the female faithful was higher in all ages from 30 years of age.

 

By age group, the percentage of the faithful aged 55-59 accounted for 9.9%, followed by that of the faithful aged 45-49, 8.9% and then those aged 50-54, 8.7%. The number of the faithful in their 10s accounted for 381,234, or 6.6% in the total Catholics in Korea. The number of people over 65 years of age accounted for 1,070,262 or 18.4% increase in comparison with 17.4% of the previous year.

 

Of the 15 dioceses and the Military Ordinariate in Korea, the Archdiocese of Seoul was the most populous with the number of the faithful standing at 1,527,951 or 26.3% of the total Catholics in Korea. The Archdiocese of Seoul was followed by the Diocese of Suwon (900,746 or 15.5%), the Diocese of Incheon (510,923 or 8.8%), the Archdiocese of Daegu (503,551 or 8.7%), the Diocese of Busan (454,890 or 7.8%), the Archdiocese of Gwangju (362,923 or 6.2%), the Diocese of Daejeon (324,998 or 5.6%), and the Diocese of Uijeongbu (304,048 or 5.2%). Adding up the number of the faithful in national capital areas, i.e. Seoul, Suwon, Uijeongbu, and Incheon, the number amounts to 3,243,668 or 55.8% of the Catholics in Korea.

 

With regard to the increasing number of the diocesan faithful, the Diocese of Daejeon and the Diocese of Uijeongbu were ahead of others with the rate of 2.2%, followed by the Diocese of Cheju (1.9%), the Diocese of Suwon (1.8%), the Diocese of Chunchon (1.5%), and the Diocese of Incheon (1.4%).

 

In terms of the percentage of evangelization, namely of the Catholic population in comparison with to the local population , the Archdiocese of Seoul was ahead of others with the rate of 15.0%, followed by the Diocese of Cheongju (11.8%), the Dioceses of Cheju and of Incheon (11.6%), the Archdiocese of Daegu (11.1%), and the Archdiocese of Gwangju (11.0%).

 

The number of parishes in 2017 was 1,734, a slight increase of 15 and the number of secondary stations was 737, a slight decrease of 4 from the previous year.

 

The Statistics also indicated that the number of clergy in Korea in 2017 amounted to 5,318 priests and 42 bishops including 2 Cardinals, 5,360 in total . There were 5,160 Korean priests and 158 foreign missionary priests, with an increase of 3.2% and a decrease of 3.7% respectively in comparison with the previous year. Among them, 4,386 were diocesan priests, 781 religious priests, and 151 missionary priests. The number of seminarians was 1,319, with a decrease of 7.2% from the previous year.

 

There were 1,593 men religious, excluding novices, while there were 10,143 women religious. The number of novices in total was 394.

 

According to the Statistics, the number of the newly baptized in 2017 was 96,794. This indicates a decrease of 12.9% (14,345 in number) from the previous year. By gender, the newly baptized men and women represented 51,396 and 45,398, with a decrease of 15.7% (9,541 in number) and a decrease of 9.6% (4,804 in number) respectively in comparison with the previous year. The number of children baptized amounted to 21,530 or 22.2%, whereas that of adults baptized amounted to 69,754 or 72.1% (here, children refer to infants and intellectually handicapped persons who are not able to receive the catechesis).

 

The number of the celebrations of the Sacrament of Matrimony amounted to 15,842 in 2017, with a decrease of 8.6% from the previous year. Of this number 9,842 cases were marriages with a dispensation, and 32 cases were mixed marriages.

 

The number of Sunday Mass attendance was 1,130,599 at the rate of 19.4% among the total Catholic population in Korea. The number of the faithful who received the First Communion was 19,904. The number of the faithful who received the Sacrament of Confession was 4,462,566. The number of those who received the Sacrament of Confirmation was 46,880.

 

 

No. Subject Date Views
751 Plenary Indulgence for Pilgrims Visiting Some Churches Dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary 2009.08.14 13079
750 Messages for the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary 2009.08.14 13038
749 Statement Against the Legislation of a Law on So-Called 'Dignified Death' Recognized as an Euthanasia 2009.08.27 12157
748 The First Joint Retreat of Catholics and Protestants 2010.08.31 11481
747 Message for the 96th World Day of Migrants and Refugees 2010 2010.04.16 11400
746 Prohibition of the Sacrament of Matrimony for the Migrant Women in Disguised Marriage 2010.11.22 11368
745 Decree of the Bishop of Suwon on the Private Revelation of Theresa Hwang of Sangju Date 2008-10-17 2009.08.27 11064
744 A Documentary Film on the Life of a Korean Missionary Priest is a Good Box Office 2010.11.01 10852
743 Forum on the Cooperation of the Government and the Church with the Management of the Social Welfare Facilities 2010.11.01 10476
742 Benedictine Sr. Caritas, Mother of the Deaf-Dumb, Celebrates Her 88th Birthday 2009.08.24 10401
741 Inter-religious Youth Make Peace Pilgrimage 2009.08.24 10324
740 International Symposium Held to the Memory of Stephen Cardinal Kim 2009.09.25 10141
739 Presentation of the Petition for the Beatification of 124 Korean martyrs and Fr. Thomas Choe Yang-eo 2009.08.27 10054
738 Communications on Sept. 28, 2001 2009.08.24 9969
737 Message for the Week for the Sanctification of the Family 2010.12.23 9937
736 The Closing of the Tribunal Session for the Cause of the Beatification of 124 Korean Martyrs 2009.08.27 9781
735 Message for the 27th Human Rights Sunday 2009.08.27 9682
734 Handbook for Pilgrimage to Catholic Shrines in Korea 2011.08.26 9620
733 South Korean Priests and North Korean Catholics Join Hands to Commemorate Patriot An and Agree on Joint Excavation of His Remains 2009.08.24 9557
732 Reopening of the Museum of Jeoldusan Martyrs' Shrine 2009.09.21 9547

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